You may recall last month’s report that Tokyo University had sent whisky to the International Space Station to test the effects of weightlessness on the aging process. Also, and this might be the more important reason for launching booze on a rocket to an orbital space station, because they could.
Scottish distiller Ardbeg performed a similar experiment starting in 2011, and they’ve completed their tasting notes on two samples of the same scotch — on ages on earth, the other aboard ISS:
Earth sample: “The sample had a woody aroma, reminiscent of an aged Ardbeg style, with hints of cedar, sweet smoke and aged balsamic vinegar, as well as raisins, treacle toffee, vanilla and burnt oranges.
“On the palate, its woody, balsamic flavours shone through, along with a distant fruitiness, some charcoal and antiseptic notes, leading to a long, lingering aftertaste, with flavours of gentle smoke, tar and creamy fudge.
Space sample: “Its intense aroma had hints of antiseptic smoke, rubber and smoked fish, along with a curious, perfumed note, like violet or cassis, and powerful woody tones, leading to a meaty aroma.
“The taste was very focused, with smoked fruits such as prunes, raisins, sugared plums and cherries, earthy peat smoke, peppermint, aniseed, cinnamon and smoked bacon or hickory-smoked ham. The aftertaste is intense and long, with hints of wood, antiseptic lozenges and rubbery smoke.”
Ardbeg is distilled in the Islay region, which is known for great big, peaty scotches with long finishes — so their Space Scotch seems different, yet the same.
I’d love to try it, but I get the feeling if you have to ask…